Social Media

101 Social Media

Melanie Mathos and Chad Norman presented at #SXSW. A couple highlights from their book 101 Social Media Tactics for Nonprofits

  • Nonprofit membership to YouTube allows you at add annotations to videos and direct people to links that are outside of Google/YouTube sphere (no allowed to individual users).
  • Add FourSquare check-in locations and details related to your programs or services.  This is great for causes that have not headquarters or are range over a variety of locations.  Consider the impact a land trust with many preserves.
  • More causes are using Pinterest to link images to the organization’s website and blogs.
  • Develop a social media dashboard using Google Analytics.
  • Publish photo from your nonprofit under Flickr: Creative Commons to gain additional marketing reach.
I have the book on order and look forward to more useful strategies.

Day Two of Great SXSW Ideas

A few highlights from today’s journey among the best new ideas that intersected my journey around Austin.

Session with Vice-President Al Gore and Sean Parker (think Napster, Causes on Facebook, or the character played by Justin Timberlake in the film The Social Network).  (#goreparker)

  • Being “liked” by somebody online is not the same level of engagement as connecting with someone offline who is willing to action for your cause.
  • There are 800,000 meaningful political offices held in the United States.  If we want to alter the current discourse we need to realize the reach is far deeper than Washington, DC.
  • Current TV has been the leader in running user generated advertisements
  • The internet has been very successful as taking money and market share from traditional businesses
  • 30% of the broadband network activity during high usage periods is directed towards services such as Netflix.  This is an example of the mismatch between evolving and traditional media.
Dean Kamen (think Segway) spoke about Invention and Innovation (#SXdkamen)
  • Be hands on with innovation.  We do not lecture about football for nine months and then go on the field to play.  We need to be hands on and project based with education.
  • Dean co-founded FIRST which aims to make science and math competitions bigger than the Super Bowl.  This years competition has 22,000 teams.
  • The sustainability of humans is a race between technological advancement and catastrophe
  • If we could provide clean water to the 1.6 billion humans who currently have none we would solve 50% of the world wide treatable diseases.
  • Dean has partnered with Coca-Cola to instal his clean water machines in places with no clean water.  Coke wants to be the stewards of clean water and they have the most advance world wide distribution system.
  • In a free society you get what you celebrate.  Celebrate what you want.
Just a few excellent points among many yesterday.

South By Great Ideas

A day at South by Southwest can be overwhelming, exhilarating, and offer some paradigm shifts.  A quick recap of some of best ideas  from yesterday’s presenters (I have included the Twitter hashtag so you can read the tweets from attendees at each presentation).

Ramez Naam discussed Infinite Resource (#SXInfinite) 

    • Knowledge is not depleted by usage (unlike other comodities).  It can accumulate over time which actually increases the value of knowledge.  Consider the difference between a 1950’s computer and the iPhone.  Knowledge allowed us to shrink the size of the device thousands of times, it uses thousands of times less material, is more powerful, and more people can have their own.
    • The real race for the future viability of planet earth is between consumption and innovation.

Felipe Matos, Heather Cronk, Jackie Mahendra, and Joe Sudbay presented on Waging a War with Social Media (#SXStoryPower)

    •  People on the ground are often willing to go much further in confronting a situation than the organizations who have a mission to solve the same problem.
    • Confronting the moral authority of the White House was the turning moment for their campaign against Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

Cheryl Contee, Claire Diaz Ortiz, Ramya Raghavan, Robert Wolfe introduced 21st Century Giving: Social Philanthropy’s Rise (#SX21stgiving)

    • YouTube just launched a livestreaming platform to its nonprofit members
    • Twitter has only 2-3 third party platforms for people to give online (TwitPay is one).  This is an area that will expand.
    • Crowdrise has a mission of making fundraising fun.  It has created crests (badges) for donors and fundraisers who reach specific levels.

Brian Seth Hurst, Dina Benadon, Lance Weiler, and Tracy Fullertone discussed Multiplatform Storytelling (#SXfrontline)

    • 10 tips to developing a story:
        • Take time to evaluate the story you want to tell.
        • Ask the hard questions: why would anyone care? Ask this five times.
        • Let go of a single point of view.
        • Consider how to show rather than tell.
        • Make it easy for your audience to become collaborators.
        • Don’t let the world get in the way of your story.
        • Consider something local before you jump to the global.
        • The number of screens doesn’t equal a better experience.  It is much harder to design with simplicity.
        • Fail quickly- you learn more what didn’t work than what did.
        • Keep it simple.  If someone cannot explain it then it will die.

Random great quotes
  • If you are overworked, just do better and higher quality work
  • Optimism is the ultimate weapon, ultimate revolutionary act because it propels people into action
  • In order for people to start a revolution, people have to experience almost hysterical optimism
  • Celebrities should add to the conversation for the causes they support but being too proactive can turn people off.
  • Each technology platform has its own turn-around time for a response (consider the difference between a text message, email, and a comment on a blog post).

Linked Social Media Platforms

Should my Google+ account automatically update on Facebook and Twitter?  Or is each a unique platform that needs to be cultivated with posts and activity that best reflect their individual strengths?  How are you managing all your social media platforms?  Are they linked?  Who are you following?  How do they share information that you find valuable?

There is a lot of debate right now on what is the preferred strategy.  Many nonprofits are looking at Google+ because some see it a more advantageous to fundraising, communication, and coordination.  What is your enterprise’s strategy?

Liking (in return for a chance to win a prize)

I recently posted about the trend of organizations channeling contest participants into ‘liking’ their fan page in exchange for a chance to win a prize.  Here is my take.  You may as well go back to the beach when you were in First grade and agree to share your shovel and pail with a friend if they agree to do exactly what you say.  I recall that many of those experiences ended in tears.  Somebody breaks the verbal agreement by suggesting another way to construct the sand castle and the loaned item is repossessed and the offender banished from the project.  The idea that we can control other people’s behavior is one that has proven daunting over thousands of years.  However, when we loaned our extra shovel to a friend and explained the outcome we were trying to achieve, “building the super fortress of the most powerful king of planet Zum,” but allowed for autonomy, the experience is wholly different.  Rarely did your friends invite their friends when management was prescriptive.  However, when the building project was collaborative then other people wanted to be involved and invitations were extended.

Why not offer bystanders the chance to sign-up for your contest without being forced into ‘liking’ the enterprise?  Even better yet, why not have a contest that actually benefits somebody that has a need?  During our interactions surrounding the contest one can decide to ‘like’ your organization or continue on their journey.  Lastly, remember that the tide will eventually come in and wash your creation back into the ocean, just like the prize for the contest eventually needs to be awarded.  Those that were present just for the sand castle or the prize will depart if they have not already.  Those that were inspired will already be planning to build a bigger castle tomorrow.  

Who are you trying to attract?  How are they arriving and once they do, how do they engage?

Manipulation vs Trust

Here is an example of a campaign that is less transactional that some of the ones I noted in my Its About Trust post last week.  If you want a vote you still needs to be a Facebook fan of Crate & Barrel (the hook still exists which leading practices says is manipulative) but Crate & Barrel is committed to giving the money regardless of the number of fans and votes.  In an ideal world, Crate & Barrel would open the voting to everyone and trust that those that appreciated their generosity would become fans.  If Zappos is willing to trust that customers will not abuse the free return shipping policy (which could be a significant cost) then why not allow everyone who believes in the causes you are supporting to vote.  Some of these voters will become fans based on their own motivation and the retention rate of these fans (the stickiness of their relationship) will be quantifiable higher than those who opted in just for one purpose.

Manipulation works until you lose your leverage.  Trust works far longer and the rewards are much higher.

Call Me

Would you post this image of a telephone on your website?  Perhaps you would but certainly you would put a phone number after it, right?  Then why do we place Facebook and Twitter icons all over our web platforms without our handles?  Lots of conversations about what is the right balance.  What are you doing on your online platforms?

Big Announcement!

This is Big!
Sensational Information to Share!
New Partnership Announced….
Please click on the PDF link to read about the change in the newsletter.
Anti-climatic?  What happened, you could not find the link? What if there was big news- perhaps a partnership with a major enterprise?  A whole new platform, a bigger audience, a larger megaphone, higher stakes, more networks.  Our tribe was joining forces and everything was going to change.  Should it come in a newsletter?  I am shocked by how many causes broadcast their biggest story by using just print.  In the age of YouTube, webcasts, Twitter, Facebook, interactive greeting cards, and personal delivery services we resort to a flat platform.  This is your chance to shout, “Everest Basecamp, this is Everest Summit, we made it!”  Pick-up the satellite phone and make a few calls, take some pictures, hang banners, dance, take the oxygen mask off for a second and breath the highest alpine air.  Nobody composes a newsletter and emails it out when the reach the summit of Everest.  You alert everyone in your tribe and if you can make them realize that they are part of the team, all the better.  Gather your community, huddle, look them in the eyes and allow them to gauge the significance of the announcement.  Let your fans ask questions, provide guidance, and celebrate the news.  Can you do better than sending hyperlinks with transformational news using the same document that contains a coupon and the school lunch menu?